Peace of mind that his income is taken care of

“With FMI’s income protection, I have less stress, and with this disease, stress is a killer.” Werner Van Zweel

Forty-seven year old Werner Van Zweel was a business owner and passionate musician living in Gauteng before being diagnosed with the physically debilitating and degenerative Motor Neuron Disease. The first time he knew something was wrong was when he started experiencing problems with his vocal chords and he couldn’t sing properly.

Werner is now completely immobile and confined to a wheelchair. Many adjustments had to be made to his home to allow for as much mobility and independence as possible. He has an electric wheelchair that enables him to move around and an eye tracker on his computer that allows him to use his computer for research.

He had taken out an FMI income protection policy two years before his diagnosis and says that his monthly payments from FMI provide him with massive peace of mind and he can focus his attention on being as healthy as possible without the added financial stress. Because his FMI income protection benefit mimics the income stream he once had, Werner doesn’t have the worries associated with receiving a once-off lump sum pay-out, such as inflation, interest rates, investment returns or the possibility of his money running out. He will be paid 100% of his monthly income, increasing every year with inflation, until retirement age.

Werner says that the biggest misconception of the disease, because of the slurred speech, is that people think your mind doesn’t work as well as it used to. People speak to him as if he is mentally challenged, but his mind is as sharp as ever and he so desperately wants to be treated normally. Since having to stop working he says he spends his time listening to music, reading and researching the disease as much as he can. And with Susan, his soul-mate, and his sister and mother by his side, Werner has an incredible support system.

Watch Werner’s story